Skip to content

Monthly Archives: August 2013

PennDOT Restricts Bridge Weights; Gearing Up for Fall Session Battles

The House and Senate return to session September 23, with several major policy issues still unresolved.  Among the biggest issues, and one which impacts all segments of business and society, is transportation funding. 


Shell Opens Bidding for Ethane at Proposed Beaver Co Cracker Plant

Royal Dutch Shell hasn’t decided if it will build an ethane cracker in Beaver County, but it’s taking bids from oil and gas companies in the Marcellus and Utica shales to gauge how much ethane would be available if it pulls the trigger.


Congress Faces Debate on Government Funding, Debt Limits, Farm Bill

Members of Congress will face acute budget problems when they return to Washington in September.  Having failed to pass appropriations bills to fund the government, battles are expected over adoption of a continuing resolution to avoid a government shutdown on October 1.  And to avoid any hint of federal default, Congress will also need to raise the debt ceiling. The prospects of any bipartisan solution on these issues are dim, and ERG expects to see a significant increase in rhetoric, with a last minute temporary fix to the funding and debt issues.


Agriculture, Energy and Regulations Recurring Topics at Ag Progress Days Event

During Penn State’s Annual Ag Progress Days event, U.S. Representative Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson, Chair of the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Conservation, Energy, and Forestry, and Pa Department of Agriculture Secretary George Greig held a “Barnyard Discussion” where they touched on a variety of state and federal agriculture policy issues.


DEP Announces Grants for CNG Facilities

The DEP this week announced new grant awards going to support the expansion of compressed natural gas (CNG) for transportation.  The Governor said, “These grants will help to diversify our vehicle fleet, while expanding the use of natural gas produced right here in Pennsylvania.”


EPA Finalizes 2013 Renewable Fuel Standards, Addresses E10 Blend Wall

Last week the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized the 2013 percentage standards for four fuel categories that are part of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program established by Congress. Most of these fuels are produced by American farmers and growers domestically and help reduce the carbon pollution that contributes to climate change.